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The scientific community needs to increase its involvement in defending science education -- especially evolution -- according to a coalition of seventeen scientific and educational societies, including the National Academy of Sciences, the National Science Teachers Association, the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology, and the American Institute for Biological Sciences.
The National Academy of Sciences and Institute of Medicine recently released Science, Evolution, and Creationism, a book designed to give the public a comprehensive and up-to-date picture of the current scientific understanding of evolution and its importance in the science classroom.
A non-partisan coalition is calling for a presidential debate on science and technology. "Given the many urgent scientific and technological challenges facing America and the rest of the world, the increasing need for accurate scientific information in political decision making, and the vital role scientific innovation plays in spurring economic growth and competitiveness," the coalition writes, "we call for a public debate in which the U.S.
The first issue of the new journal Evolution: Education and Outreach is now available on-line, and it's a doozy! Featured are original scientific articles by Daniel R. Brooks and Eric P. Hoberg, Niles Eldredge, and William Miller III; lesson plans and thematic expansions by Anastasia Thanukos, Michael A. Gaspar, and Gregory Eldredge; reflections on evolution by Ian Tattersall, John N. Thompson, David Ziegler, and T. Ryan Gregory; and curricula focusing on evolution from Joseph Fail Jr.
NCSE congratulates Bruce Alberts of the University of California, San Francisco, on his appointment as editor-in-chief of Science, published by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He succeeds Donald Kennedy, who served as editor-in-chief since 2000.
The Alliance for Science -- a non-profit organization which seeks "to heighten public understanding and support for science and to preserve the distinctions between science and religion in the public sphere" -- is holding its second annual essay contest. The theme is "Climate, Agriculture, and Evolution." Students are encouraged to submit essays of up to 1000 words on one of two topics: "Climate and Evolution and "Agriculture and Evolution."
Darwinian Anniversary Year, 2009
The year 2009 is a double anniversary: 200 years since Darwin was born (February 12, 1809) and 150 years since the publication of On the Origin of Species (November 24, 1859). To celebrate this anniversary, a special issue of Science & Education will be published.
Adding to the chorus of informed criticism of Michael Behe's latest book, The Edge of Evolution (Free Press, 2007), is Nick Matzke, writing in Trends in Ecology and Evolution (November 2007; 22 : 566-567).
Writing in The New York Times magazine (November 25, 2007), Hannah Rosin cast a bemused eye over a group of young-earth creationist geologists, assembled for the First Conference on Creation Geology, held in July 2007 in Cedarville, Ohio. "Creationist geologists are now numerous enough to fill a large meeting room and well educated enough to know that in rejecting the geologic timeline they are also essentially taking on the central tenets of the field," Rosin wrote.
Randy Moore reviewed Not in Our Classrooms: Why Intelligent Design is Wrong for Our Schools for BioScience (November 2007; 57 : 885-886), writing (PDF), "Not in Our Classrooms is a small, impressive book that will be a valuable resource for anyone interested in the various aspects of 'intelligent design' and the evolution-creationism debate." He was especially enthusiastic about Scott's contribution ("one of the best summaries available for